Swap Meat Let's Customers Trade "Pink Slime"
PALM SPRINGS-- It's being called pink slime. It's an additive found in most ground meat and it has consumers up in arms. But one local grocery chain invited customers to bring in the pink slime to their store for what Fresh and Easy called a "Swap Meat."
Customers got to trade in meant from another store to get Fresh and Easy meat--pink slime free.
"We've never added it to our ground beef and we never will add it to our ground beef," said Nicole Lockwood, assistant store manager at the Palm Springs Fresh and Easy.
Seventy percent of grocery ground beef in the U.S contains the additive, which is actually scraps from the slaughterhouse that is treated with ammonia.
Consumers took their beef with the filler to social media, protesting the use of what the USDA calls "lean finely textured beef." Now the maker of it has almost completely stopped production. But the USDA says it's safe to eat.
The additive has actually been used since the 1990s. Grocery stores are pulling it from their shelves, and many school districts have stopped using it
"It's affecting our children. They are putting too many additives and things which are very unhealthy for them," said Carolyn Rogers, a Desert Hot Springs resident.
Nicole Lockwood is now making her kids lunch. She doesn't want to take her chances with cafeteria food.
"I'm a little nervous understanding the quality of the food now," said Lockwood.
You may not know when you eat it. Packaging doesn't need to say when the filler is added.
"They didn't tell us about it. And, I wish they did because I wouldn't have bought the meat," said Hernandez.
Customers staying away from the beef could mean higher prices down the road.
Jessica Flores, KMIR6 News.